Vaccination is a personal choice, making it mandatory is debatable -- FDA | Inquirer News
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Vaccination is a personal choice, making it mandatory is debatable — FDA

/ 10:37 AM April 27, 2021
Mass vaccination programme for healthcare workers in Vienna

(REUTERS/File Photo)

MANILA, Philippines — The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Tuesday said that vaccination is the “personal autonomy” of a person, after a bill mandating COVID-19 inoculation was filed before the House of Representatives.

FDA Director-General Eric Domingo said that mandatory vaccination is “very debatable” because vaccines should only be given upon the consent of beneficiaries.

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“Very debatable ‘yan (That is very debatable) because this is really personal autonomy, to have someone, being a healthy person and then being injected with something,” Domingo told ABS-CBN News Channel.

“Vaccines, we give to healthy people. So usually meron kang level of autonomy required. Like right now, kapag nagbigay ako ng EUA (emergency use authorization), required na kailangan na may consent ng patient na magpabakuna,” he added.

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(We administer vaccines to healthy people. So a level of autonomy is usually required. When the FDA grants EUA, the patient receiving the vaccine  should give his or her consent.)

Cavite Rep. Elpidio Barzaga Jr. earlier filed House Bill No. 9252 which seeks to amend the COVID-19 Vaccination Program Act of 2021 to make vaccination mandatory “as may be determined” by the Department of Health (DOH). 

Domingo, however, noted that available vaccines against COVID-19 are still being administered through EUA.

He said this means that the vaccines are not yet fully developed.

“May mga side effects pa ‘yan na hindi natin alam. So medyo tricky na ‘yung making vaccination compulsory, pero making a vaccine under emergency use authorization compulsory, that is even a little more complicated,” he explained.

(These vaccines have side effects that we still do not know. Making vaccination compulsory is already tricky, but making vaccination with vaccines under emergency use authorization compulsory is even a little more complicated.)

“I think that’s a very difficult proposition,” he added.

For its part, Malacañang earlier said that although the State has the authority to require people to get vaccinated against COVID-19, there is no need to make vaccination mandatory yet since the vaccine supply in the country is still too low.

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TAGS: COVID-19, covid-19 vaccination, Elpidio Barzaga Jr., Food and Drug Administration, House Bill No. 9252, mandatory vaccination
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